Sandhill cranes

sandhillcranes

Sandhill cranes (Gruiformes: Gruidae: Grus canadensis) photographed 03/12/2013 near Clayton, Michigan.

The other day on my way home from work I came across about a dozen sandhill cranes (Gruiformes: Gruidae: Grus canadensis) foraging in a corn field along a rural road. These large birds feed mostly on grain and seeds, but will also eat insects and other small animals.

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Sandhill cranes (Gruiformes: Gruidae: Grus canadensis) photographed 03/12/2013 near Clayton, Michigan.

Sandhill cranes overwinter in the southern United States and migrate to northern states and Canada in the spring. Although I’ve seen them nesting here in southeast Michigan in the summer, the size of this congregation suggested they were still on their way farther north. These birds tend to migrate in groups, with mating pairs eventually breaking off and settling down to raise their young.

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Sandhill cranes (Gruiformes: Gruidae: Grus canadensis) photographed 03/12/2013 near Clayton, Michigan.

After a few minutes they got spooked and took off, calling while in flight:

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About Jeremy Sell

Science and nature nerd.
This entry was posted in Vertebrate Zoology and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Sandhill cranes

  1. I would love to see these birds in person, but I enjoyed the video to hear them…Michelle

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